My PAP in early May came back abnormal. I had a colpo and biopsy done. The doctor saw one area with "subtle changes" and did a biopsy. The biopsy came back showing "mild cell changes" (I think this is the doctor's way of saying mild displasia). She said 80% of these cases will resolve itself within a year. She recommended coming back in 4 months for a repeat PAP. She said if she had seen anything more serious, she would be recommending cryotherapy or removal by biopsy. This seemed consistent with what I have read about mild dysplasia on the internet.
But then I started seeing posts on various forums from people whose biopsy results came back as mild dysplasia but their dr then recommended a leep. Their leep results then came back as stage II or III, and even early stages of cancer. Thank goodness their doctor recommended the leep immediately! But what made their doctor recommend a leep right away instead of monitoring for mild dysplasia?
I am now wondering isn't it risky to wait 4-6 months for a repeat PAP with a "mild dysplasia" biopsy result when a Leep might reveal a more serious condition? I am wondering if I am taking a gamble in waiting four months for a follow up PAP. If that PAP comes back abnormal, then what? Another colpo, biopsy, more waiting to determine treatment? Something more serious might actually be happening right now that was not seen with a biopsy but could be revealed with a Leep. Seems like the sooner you find out and get rid of it the better?
When I was 19, (I'm now 44), I had an abnormal PAP. Dr. ordered a colpo, biopsy, and cryotherapy. One right after another. I was too young and naive to know what questions to ask. I just did it. I don't even know what the diagnosis or test results were. Just that the biopsy result was benign, and everything was pretty normal since then. My current doctor says they treated mild dysplasia a lot more aggressively back then.
This is going to drive my crazy until I finally get to my follow up. I am agonizing over everything I do, eat, the environment I am in, wondering what I am exposing myself to or have changed in my habits that would cause these cells to change now. I am paranoid now that every ache and pain, cough, etc. is cancer.
It's not really risky to wait 4 months. Even if you had severe dysplasia, it's unlikely for it to progress significantly in 4 months. Mild dysplasia clears up on its own 70% of the time, so in 6 months you could be all better.
Management guidelines for CIN 1 is to watch and wait and re-pap to see if the cell changes are regressing. *Usually* if you have three mild dysplasia paps in a row, they would then look at doing treatment. I don't know why some doctors will treat right away and others will not, I guess it depends on their comfort level (and, of course, the patient's!). If you are concerned about waiting, I would suggest that you sit down with your doctor and ask your questions. If your doctor is not able to reassure you, then you might want to get a second opinion. In the meantime, check with reputable sites regarding CIN treatment. Look for the management guidelines/protocols, they are out there and are pretty clear/easy to follow. The more knowledge you have the more comfortable you will be. Good luck!
Since my biopsy camed back as "mild changes", I felt reasonably ok with waiting the four months for a repeat PAP. From what I have read, this condition usually goes away or is easily treatable.
It alarmed me though when I read about others whose biopsy came back as "mild dysplasia" but their soon to follow Leep showed much worse. Having had to have cryo in the past, it worried me that maybe my biopsy is not telling all there is to know.
You're right, I need to talk with my doctor and ask my questions. When I get the phone calls from my doctor, I am usually filled with dread as I know she wouldn't be calling me unless something was not right. My head is usually spinning from whatever news she has to give me, and I don't get my questions figured out until long after we have hung up.
I am trying to keep my head about this and not let this consume me. Perhaps it would be nice to read more stories from those whose situations cleared up or were successfully treated. I suppose those who have received a clean bill of health move on and don't have as big of need to post as those with existing and scary conditions, which is understandable.
I think the stories you read here will be those women who have had repeated abnormal paps, in which the body is not clearing the dysplasia; and stories from those women who don't quite "fit" the statistics. As Timber said, there is a 70% regression rate with mild dysplasia, and so women who have posted here before and who have gone on to have normal paps likely won't be posting. I know it is hard at first, I was one who didn't "fit" the way this was supposed to happen and it was very overwhelming. My best advice is to give yourself time and you will become more comfortable. four months isn't that far away it will be here before you know it. Now a special message to those cells - go away and leave LCGirl alone! Some gals recommend visualizing the cervix healing...can't hurt!. Also check out the posts on vitamins and supplements, folic acid is supposed to be very helpful in boosting your bodies ability to clear the dysplasia. And if you smoke, now is a REALLY good time to stop, smoking has been shown to aid in the progression of the abnormal cells.
I had a pap back in I think last Oct that came back abnormal. My doctor told me to wait 3 months and come back for another. I went back 3 months later for another pap and that one came back abnormal too. I was scheduled for a colposcopy a week later. When in for my bioposy he took 3 samples. Two weeks later the results came back for mild dysplasia. My OBGYN told me to wait it out since it's been known to clear on it's own. I was told to make an appointment in 3 MORE months to get ANOTHER pap.
I went home scanned the net and found vitamins to help rid precancer cells. Also found that if you have a low pH level that cancer cells thrive in those levels. I raised that up with pH pills and certain foods.
I went back last month for my pap again and this time it came back NEGATIVE. It's all gone. I am HPV and STD free too.
I went home scanned the net and found vitamins to help rid precancer cells. Also found that if you have a low pH level that cancer cells thrive in those levels.
Just this weekend I added folic acid, B complex, and switched to a higher vitamin/mineral packed multi. I checked out a few lists of foods on ph levels. Wow, I was stunned to see that the foods I eat most weigh heavily on the acid side. Very interesting and worth looking into more.
Thanks for your comments everyone, you have helped to calm me down a bit
I take pH pills that I purchased from the Whole Food Market. There is also drops and powder that you can buy to add to your water to make it alkaline. I haven't bought the water additives yet but I will look at them tomorrow.
Remember that 70% of mild dysplasias will clear up on their own, so while it's tempting to contribute a normal Pap to your vitamin regimen, correlation does not equal causation. Regression may have happened anyway, as it does with many women (neither you nor I have proof either way!).
Aren't you the happy camper? Be that as it may my pH was low. So having Dysplasia made me take a closer look at my health. I found out my progesterone was low and my T3 is low. It was a blessing in disguise. Raising my pH has made a tremendous difference with my health. Don't care what anyone says vitamins never hurt unless you OD on them. Not having vitamins in your body can do damage that can not be undone especially when it comes to B vitamins. There have been many studies on vitamins and dysplasia which is where I found out which ones to take to up my chances of decreasing it.
There have been tremendous studies that prove vitamins and herbs have helped people with cancer and illness in general. Not having vitamins will cause illness.
Why should I take the wait and see attitude and ride it out? That's not how I go through life. Not doing anything is not going to get me anywhere.
Last edited by FromSqueaky; 06-10-2007 at 09:05 PM.
I'm not saying that you shouldn't be trying vitamins or taking a closer look at your health. Of course you should. I'm just saying that we all need to be careful not to consider one person's experience as proof that any treatment or remedy works.
That is true that 70% or more of mild dysplasia spontaneously regresses, but how do we know what those women were doing in their lives to help that situation out?
I truly think it's absolutely ludicrous that doctors don't tell their patients with mild dysplasia to boost their immune system up in every way possible while they wait and watch. In those few months before a re-pap, much can change for the better or worse! I do wish doctors and nutritionists or naturopathic doctors worked more closely together, especially with women who have dysplasia. The LEEP is not a cure-all, and there have been studies done on that. Yes, the recurrence rate is low, but there you have it-- THERE IS A RECURRENCE RATE. Why chance being in that small percentage of having to have repeat leeps until one day they take out most of your cervix? Between all that "waiting-and-watching" time, the patient could have been proactive about her health, seen a nutritionist and gotten herself on a vitamin/supplement regimen that boosts her immune system and help suppress the HPV strain(s) she has!
I can't tell you how upset I was to find out *via these boards* that prescription folic acid helped incredibly with dysplasia-- and NO DOCTOR or NP in the past 2 years that I've had abnormal paps recommended or prescribed me this! I think this type of cancer is so unique in that we *can* proactively keep it at bay via health supplements and better immune systems. Yes, leeps and laser, etc are wonderful advancements for stemming cervical cancer, but I truly believe they are used much, much too hastily for women with dysplasia. There's nothing to be taken lightly about a surgery that scrapes off part of your reproductive area--especially for us women who've not had children yet!!
Sorry to vent, but this topic does get me worked up as this is an affliction that we can all be proactive about and help suppress the virus with supplements. Most western doctors are not trained in preventative health or nutrition, which is exactly the expertise we need to help make the dysplasia regress. Be proactive about your health ladies and remember to always inquire and do your own research before making any major decisions!
Last edited by LAgirl81; 06-11-2007 at 11:08 AM.
Reason: double post
Timber you came across as a doom sayer. There is nothing anyone can do to help their body besides eating the right foods, exercising, and taking supplements tp fight HPV if they already have it. The way your post came across was that it was not a good idea to take them.
I didn't mean to come across as contestatory nor did I read to much into what you said. That said, however, I do remember you saying in a previous post that I should not mess around with dysplasia (in terms of considering alternative to a LEEP or cryo) and that supplements only do so much. So I suppose it does seem that you're critiquing the more naturopathic/homeopathic route for treating dysplasia and seem to back more the LEEP, cryo options. Having read incessantly and talked to numerous health professionals (both MDs and NPs), it is indubitable the importance of supplements, vitamins, etc. in boosting the immune system in helping dysplasia regress. I have also read in many medical journals that LEEPs are being all-too frequently performed on women with milder/moderate dysplasias that have a good chances of regressing. And messing with any part of the reproductive area of nulliparous women is quite daunting and frightening. That is not to say that LEEPs and cryos are not successful and help pre-cancer stages from advancing-- I do understand their importance, however I am highly skeptical of gynecologists who tell me that I may need a LEEP to treat my mild/moderate dysplasia when various naturopathic doctors I talked to mentioned that these procedures should be used in only more advanced, severe dysplasia. Until my next re-pap, I will be doing everything naturopathically possible to help my dysplasia regress. Personally I will not mess around with that very delicate area of my body unless the dysplasia progresses. But everyone is different and may follow the LEEP route or the naturopathic route. However, even if a woman chooses to treat dysplasia with a LEEP or cryo, I believe taking supplements and boosting the immune system naturopathically is the best way of helping the body heal and to keep the dysplasia from ever recurring (as we all know that LEEPs do not *cure* dysplasia).
Sorry, that's a long-winded way of saying I did not mean to attack you Timber but rather I wanted to stress the importance of improving one's overall health (via supplements) and to not rely soley only LEEPs and cyros for curing dysplasia.